Seven Ways to Prevent Chronic Headaches

According to the World Health Organization (WHO) there are two headache types and 13 headache classifications. If you have been seeing a doctor for treatment or have been doing some research then you’ve probably come across a number of terms, like migraine headache, cluster headache, tension-type headache, allergy headache, sinus headache and so on.

Despite the advances in medical science, an astonishing 25 million Americans suffer from migraines! And a whopping nine out of 10 suffer from other headaches as part of their daily lives! The headaches are accepted as inevitable parts of life and sufferers swallow prescription drugs as a matter of habit, just as they brush their teeth without giving the action a second thought.

The problem is chronic headaches and migraines take their toll, not only on the body’s ability to maintain a state of homeostasis or wellness, but on the ability to think logically, see clearly and to feel and act appropriately. The impact all of this has on one’s quality of life is shattering: jobs lost, relationships ruined, motivation diminished and happiness disintegrated.

Not all headaches are the same. Not everyone experiences headaches and their symptoms the same way. The same trigger does not always trigger the same type of headache. What’s more, headaches encompass physical, physiological and emotional dimensions. In short, headaches are complex conditions that need a comprehensive approach to achieve their banishment.

Despite what you may have been told, the particular label you place on a headache is less important than taking a multi-pronged approach to returning your body to its natural, balanced state in which headaches are less likely to occur.

After personally suffering from painful migraines for nearly 30 years, I devised an “integrated mind/body approach” to prevent headaches of all kinds from taking hold in the body. Indeed, the key to ending headache pain is proactive avoidance of its causes rather than reactive treatment of its symptoms.
 
Major headache triggers include chemicals in food and beverages and even toxins in the body and air, as well as harboring stress and missing sleep. In order to reestablish cellular balance, one must remove the toxins and stressors that tax the body or learn to deal with them in new ways. For most people, this means a major lifestyle change. Here are seven ways to start:

Be Mindful of Dietary Choices
Eat more fresh items and fewer processed foods. Also, try eliminating suspected food triggers one by one from your diet for two to three weeks and monitor what happens with your headaches. Common culprits include cheeses (such as Brie, feta and Gorgonzola), pickles, chocolate, dairy products (goat as well as cow), alcohol (beware the notorious red wine headache), processed meats (bologna, pepperoni, salami, hot dogs, etc.), raw onions, peanuts, raisins and products that contain MSG.

Stay Hydrated with Plenty of Water
When we become dehydrated, the digestive system, lungs, liver and kidneys can no longer do their jobs as effectively, and this can lead to headaches.

Drink plenty of water every day to help your body expel hazardous chemical residues and toxic build-up. Water cleanses the colon, flushes the liver and kidneys and empties the bowels. I recommend two quarts of bottled or filtered water daily. Please note: caffeinated coffees and teas, carbonated sodas and sugar-filled fruit drinks don’t count toward that total!

Break the Patterns of Stress
Stress, in its many forms, is a leading cause of headaches. So to control headaches, you must break the pattern of stress. Fortunately, there are many ways to go about doing this.

To reduce tension and tightness in the shoulders, neck and back, which can lead to headaches, see a massage therapist or do daily gentle stretches. A chiropractor can work with misalignments that can occur as a result of constantly tensed muscles. I also recommend meditation and deep breathing to quiet the mind and relax the body’s nervous system. Many people benefit from tai chi, yoga, qigong or other gentle exercises that stretch the body and soothe the soul. Find whatever stress relievers work for you—it could be walking, biking, ice skating or whatever.

Taking a multiple B vitamin at least twice daily also helps fight the stress reflex. For many, a magnesium supplement may be useful as well.

Take Deep Breaths
In addition to stress relief, deep breathing ensures a continuous flow of fresh oxygen into the body. Many people’s breathing is too shallow, which means they don’t take in enough oxygen. To get more oxygen into your system I recommend progressive relaxation.

Lie down comfortably with your arms at your sides, and inhale as you tense your toes. Hold for a moment and then exhale as you consciously relax them. Gradually and slowly continue up the rest of the body, mindfully tensing and relaxing the feet, calves, thighs, etc., as you inhale and exhale.

Get Sufficient Sleep
Everyone knows we get cranky and headachy when we don’t get enough sleep. To prevent headaches it’s essential to establish deep and constant sleep patterns.

If you must drink caffeine, avoid it six hours before bed. Also avoid overly stimulating activities such as intense exercise. Stop working at the computer at least an hour or so before bed. Instead, establish a regular, soothing routine, such as taking a warm bath and reading a good book before retiring.

Engage in Regular Exercise
Exercise reduces stress, releases endorphins and dopamine, improves blood flow, works through muscle tension and keeps the body firm and supple. Engaging in simple, regular activities such as brisk walks and simple stretches will go a long way toward preventing headaches, as well as improving health overall.

Exercise at the same time every day, buddy up with a friend or group for accountability and support, and consider a trainer (if only for a few sessions) to help you establish a safe, personalized program. Even very easy, do-it-yourself stretches are beneficial for headache prevention. For example, try the chin-to-chest exercise. To stretch and release tension in the shoulders and upper back, use your hands to gently push the back of the head forward until your chin touches your chest. Repeat several times daily.

Know Your Number
Most chronic headache sufferers can’t seem to find definitive relief from their pain by simply adhering to the above-mentioned suggestions. Unfortunately, the problem is more complex and what I tell patients is that the problem is compounded by multiple trigger combinations.

For me, my trigger number is four within a 24-hour period. I can have coffee, milk and sweetener with no problem, but if I get stressed: Bang! I can eat a hotdog on a white bun, drink a beer and I am fine. But get up with less than eight hours sleep and a headache will show itself. So, when living a lifestyle based on prevention it is important that you know your number… that magic digit that indicates how many triggers you can have in a day or week before the headache returns. And with that knowledge and the right amount of discipline you can keep the pain away forever.

With the above lifestyle changes you can reduce the frequency and severity of your headaches. The time to make the change is now. I wish you the best in this life-changing endeavor.

Yours in self-directed wellness,

—Dr. Mark Wiley

Obama's Human Rights Record Criticized Before Nobel Ceremonies

Obama's human rights record criticized before Nobel ceremoniesAs he prepared his Nobel Peace Prize acceptance speech, the advocacy group Amnesty International began questioning President Barack Obama’s human rights record.

Amnesty’s executive director Larry Cox stated that Obama’s human rights record is still a "work in progress" and that he must make it a "constant priority—not just when it is convenient."

While Cox gives Obama credit for a pragmatic foreign policy style and a willingness to open talks with countries like North Korea and Iran, he also faults him for not doing enough to address specific human rights violations, according to Reuters.

"He has spoken out on some cases… but he has not raised enough issues of human rights in China, for example, where it would have demonstrated real commitment on our part not to let other needs prevent us from speaking out very forcefully," said Cox.

Amnesty’s director also encouraged the president to use his acceptance speech as a platform for change.

"[He should say that] the U.S. after many, many decades has failed to provide that kind of leadership [on human rights] and now wants, once again, to provide that leadership," he stated, quoted by the news source.

Meanwhile, President Obama has faced criticism after he acknowledged last month that he will not meet his original January deadline for shutting down the notorious military prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.
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EPA: Greenhouse Gases A Global Hazard, Stricter Regulations To Come

EPA: Greenhouse gases a global hazard, stricter regulations to comeLast Monday, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) officially declared carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases a danger to public health and welfare. The announcement gives the EPA the authority to mandate policy that would regulate carbon emissions, regardless of whether or not Congress passes the long awaited cap-and-trade bill.

The "endangerment" finding will allow the agency to regulate carbon emissions from all sources including factories, utility plants as well as pedestrian and commercial vehicles.

"These long-overdue findings cement 2009’s place in history as the year when the U.S. government began addressing the challenge of greenhouse gas pollution and seizing the opportunity of clean-energy reform," said EPA administrator Lisa Jackson.

Meanwhile, critics believe that the agency has granted itself unrestrictive power, and that the already troubled economy will become a casualty of an imminent climate war.

"It’s going to have consequences that are very significant for our economic recovery," said Republican Senator Judd Gregg of New Hampshire. "A lot of economic expansion is going to be put on hold pending what happens with these regulations. And we really can’t afford that right now," he added, quoted by NewsMax.com.

U.S. Chamber of Commerce CEO Tom Donohue said that the new regulations would stall economic growth and that the EPA, whose top administrator is chosen by the White House, was basing its findings on "shaky, cherry-picked data," quoted by Bloomberg.com.
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Supreme Court Says Releasing Detainee Photos Would Endanger Troops

Supreme Court says releasing detainee photos would endanger troopsThe U.S. Supreme Court has overturned the ruling of a lower court that allowed the disclosure of photographs of detainees allegedly being abused by their U.S. investigators. The decision was criticized by civil rights groups but praised by lawmakers in Washington.

Representatives of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), which brought the lawsuit under the Freedom of Information Act, have said the organization will continue to fight for releasing the photos which it says show the U.S. engaged in acts of torture and other illegal activities to obtain information.

Steven R. Shapiro, the ACLU’s legal director, commented that "no democracy has ever been made stronger by suppressing evidence of its own misconduct."

However, in announcing its decision, the highest court referred to the recent enactment of the Homeland Security Appropriations Act of 2010. The Act contains a provision allowing the Secretary of Defense to issue a certification preventing the release of any photograph whose disclosure may endanger U.S. citizens, members of the United States Armed Forces or employees of the U.S. government deployed abroad.

The decision was applauded by Senators Lindsey Graham, a South Carolina Republican, and Joe Lieberman, an Independent from Connecticut, who called it an "important step to protect the safety of Americans who place themselves in harm’s way to defend our security and liberty."
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The Morality of Paper Money

Government printing press money distorts economic reality and dilutes morality. Financial speculation rises with the increase in paper money and the general work ethic deteriorates. The something-for-nothing mentality pervades society.

Paper money promotes the “quick buck” syndrome like narcotics peddling and hookers on the streets. Hookers, incidentally, were widespread in the Weimar Republic in Germany in 1923 because the women had to sell their bodies for food for themselves and their families. The social order visibly deteriorates. The morality of the stable gold standard gradually changes to the amorality of fiat. Few people see the cause and effect and the politicians try to legislate human behavior. They always fail as the system is overrun with jails and prisons.

Fiat promotes an illusory reality where non-substance such as financial speculation and gambling replaces the substance of industrial production and long-term value.

When consumption surpasses income, as the government and the politicians promote, distorted human emotions replace stable behavior. Social breakdown increases and real values are forgotten.

Prices of labor and craftsmen escalate beyond all reason when there is never enough money. Service repairmen charge like medical doctors.

When labor and supplies are valued in fiat, everything becomes distorted. In the final stages of hyperinflation there is no anchor to sanity and common sense.

Paper money expands consumption way beyond income. This eventually guarantees debt collapse and social breakdown. The foundation of the household collapses and the middle class is destroyed. Paper money is an illusion because it is non-substance and can be created by the government to infinity. When the people accept numbers on green strips of paper or computer symbols for money, they accept illusion for reality. They accept non-substance for substance. Real money (gold and silver) comes from the earth and human production. It is no illusion.

Future generations are cheated out of life because working mothers give up newborns for fiat paper money. They unwittingly exchange new life for paper money, and more paper money and consumption. This is what the system promotes.

What Comes Next?

I believe that I can assure you that three years from now the dollar purchasing parity will be about 30 cents as compared to the present. I don’t know why it is not obvious to people who have dollar savings.

There are many controls coming. As paper currencies come to their end, governments greatly step up suppression of the people. They start foreign wars. They attack their own population with high-sounding hypocrisy. Government makes criminals out of honest men—“in the public interest,” of course.

What then?

Default of the United States? Not formally but by stealth, depreciation of the currency (inflation). Will the U.S. world system hold? Yes, as long as world fear factor dominates as a result of superior military power.

Much press about vast U.S. debt? Yes, but sober people understand monetary realism, to wit, that fiat implies stealth (slow) default. No payment is ever intended and impossible even if intended. The main feature or attribute of sovereign debt default is gradualism. The public cannot grasp gradualism even as they are impoverished. The debt propaganda is a cover for the fiat regime. It’s a hoax!

Scarcity of gold? Already evident.

New taxes? A value-added tax (VAT) as in Europe, income tax increases on the American “rich,” currency controls, strict rules on cash transfers and withdrawals, more reporting requirements on asset wealth. These are some of the controls alluded to earlier.

The system will try to defeat all attempts by individuals (and collectively) to protect their savings and personal security.

Destruction of the middle class? It’s already begun. It is impoverishment through currency depreciation and class warfare between the perceived haves and have nots, i.e. the politics of envy. A huge percentage of population will be pushed below the poverty line.

Savings and pension fund assets? They will be forced conversion into treasury bonds. There is plenty of precedence for this, Argentina being the most recent example.

Martial law? Yes, at some point.

Will confidence deteriorate in the banking system? Yes, by stealth (quietly) resulting in restrictions of withdrawals and frozen bank accounts.

Price of gold? When all is said and done it will be measured in U.S. dollars to about $4,000, then in Swiss francs because of the nebulousness (no meaning) of the U.S. dollar.

First Rule of Government—control its own people. America is occupied by government.

Possible good news? The current economic depression will extend the system (via nationalization) and the precious metals market and gold stocks. I foresee inflationary prosperity for a while with massive infrastructure rebuilding. If so, get your house in order for the final deluge. Do all the things you know to do such as long-term food storage. Inflationary collapse creates shortages of everything.

The stock market turns up before the economy. Sentiment is black, getting close to time to buy stocks. Never stop buying gold!

Don’t wait for exchange (currency) controls to transfer some funds into Swiss francs via Swiss annuities.

Take delivery of all your stock certificates. Soon you will not be able to. This cuts brokers out and takes your stocks out of the system. They will tell you anything to stop you. They will not tell you that they loan your stocks out for shorting and make income on them. Also they fear the loss of re-sales when you decide to sell, perhaps through another broker. They get directions from above to stop the delivery of stocks. Don’t be dissuaded!

My friends, the “change” promised by politicians should remind us that some power, both political and economic, is built upon destructive forces. We have reminded you many times of the destruction of the middle class in the U.S. now going on.

When a segment of the population becomes impoverished they clamor for “change.” This is exactly what happened to bring about the rise of Adolph Hitler. The German population was largely impoverished as a result of depreciating paper currency. No U.S. politician would dare mention depreciating paper money, as Hitler did not. He had his own paper mark.

The destructive forces in America are in full appearance for the few who can see. But for the majority, they are blind to the biggest and greatest transfer of wealth in the history of the world. Yes, there is change for exactly the same reason as the destructive change that gave rise to Hitler.

Inflation they call it, but it is really depreciating currency in all forms. And depreciating currency is the system used to transfer wealth from the savers and producers to the money creators.

In the early phase of paper currency the people go to work and accumulate wealth. In the final stage of the speedup of depreciating currency, wealth and savings is returned to the source, i.e., the money creators. And all appears to be natural economic forces. There is no bloodshed.

Yes, the people can be economic slaves without chains, without the rack or the thumbscrew, but with depreciating paper money. Alchemy is a reality. Non-substance (depreciating currency) is used to steal substance.

“Whoever controls the volume of (paper) money is the master of all industry and commerce,” said President James A. Garfield.

People who understand depreciating currency will do as necessary to survive and maybe prosper under the nose of despotism.

Do you know of anything that will treat skin cancer?

Dear Bob,

Do you know of anything that will treat skin cancer?

A: I recommended a skin cancer salve available from International Anti-Aging Systems in England (www.antiaging-systems.com).

The name of the cream is BEC5 Curaderm Topical Cream. It was developed by Dr. Bill Cham, who claims it to be “virtually 100 percent effective.” The cream is for non-melanoma skin cancers such as: basal cell carcinomas (BCC), squamous cell carcinomas (SCC), keratoses, keratoucanthomas, sun spots and age spots.

A 20 ml tube of BEC5 sells for $129.99. This is enough to last a very long time in my experience.

Best Wishes,
Bob

Tai Chi Can Reduce Knee Pain, Research Concludes

Tai chi can reduce knee pain, research concludesA new study, conducted by researchers from Tufts University, has found that patients over 65 years of age with knee osteoarthritis (OA) can improve their physical function and experience pain relief through regular tai chi exercise.

The study, published in the November issue of Arthritis Care and Research, followed 40 patients over a 12-week period with confirmed knee OA who were in otherwise good health.

Researchers split the participants into two sections; the study group was asked to participate in 60 minute Yang style tai chi sessions twice weekly, while the control group attended standard physical therapy and education classes.

At the end of the 12 weeks, patients practicing tai chi reported a significant decrease in knee pain compared to those who went through ordinary knee therapy.

"Our observations emphasize a need to further evaluate the biologic mechanisms and approaches of tai chi to extend its benefits to a broader population," concluded Chenchen Wang, author of the study.

The Mayo Clinic reports that tai chi can reduce anxiety and depression, improve balance, flexibility and muscle strength as well as lower blood pressure.
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Researchers Claim Mint Tea May Be Effective Alternative Medicine

Brazilian tea may be alternative treatment for common coldThere may be a natural way for some people to treat headaches, stomach pain and fever, which could be a timely discovery given that it’s flu season in the United States.

Researchers from Newcastle University have found that Brazilian mint tea, which uses the herb Hyptis crenata, had the same pain-relieving effect when compared to an aspirin-type drug.

Graciela Rocha, who led the study, said the herb has been used in the past to treat pain and that the researchers’ experiments with mice have "scientifically proven that it works as well as some synthetic drugs."

The researchers asked Brazilian doctors how the mint tea was prepared and administered it to the mice. They then used infrared beams to measure the effect of the mint tea on the animals.

"We were really surprised by how well it worked," Rocha told The Times Online. "The taste isn’t what most people in the UK would recognize as mint, it is more like sage."

Though it was not tested for it, mint tea may be an alternative treatment for those suffering from flu-like symptoms, which include headache and fever.ADNFCR-1961-ID-19480011-ADNFCR

Pine Bark Extract May Help Ward Off Early Stage Diabetic Retinopathy

Pine bark extract may help ward off early stage diabetic retinopathyA recent study suggests that plant extract taken from the bark of a pine tree can improve circulation, swelling and visual acuity in diabetic patients.

Researchers at the Gabrielle D’Annunzio University in Italy have revealed that the antioxidant pycnogenol, found in French maritime pine trees, can relieve symptoms associated with early diabetic retinopathy.

Characterized by leaky blood vessels that cause damage to the retina, the condition affects nearly 45 percent of diabetic patients and is the leading cause of blindness in people with the disease.

After only three months of treatment using pycnogenol, the majority of clinical patients with early stage diabetic retinopathy reported significant improvements in both eyesight and retinal swelling.

"Our study suggests that pycnogenol taken in the early stages of retinopathy may enhance retinal blood circulation accompanied by a regression of edema, which favorably improves vision of patients," said lead researcher Robert Steigerwalt.

"Pycnogenol may be particularly beneficial for preventing this complication in diabetic patients, based on the large number of individuals who were diagnosed when the disease had already significantly progressed," he added.
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Obama's Nobel Speech Appeases Some, Frustrates Others

Obama's Nobel speech appeases some, frustrates othersDuring his Nobel peace prize acceptance speech on Thursday, President Barack Obama remained humble, acknowledging his own limited accomplishments while vehemently defending U.S. involvement overseas.

In particular, Obama refused to denounce the concept of war just nine days after ordering 30,000 more troops into battle in Afghanistan.

"Evil does exist in the world," Obama said, quoted by the Associated Press. "A nonviolent movement could not have halted Hitler’s armies. Negotiations cannot convince al-Qaeda’s leaders to lay down their arms."

"To say that force is sometimes necessary is not a call to cynicism," he added. "It is a recognition of history, the imperfections of man and the limits of reason."

Although Obama’s speech received acclaim from some notable Republicans including Sarah Palin and Newt Gingrich, others were bothered that he received the honor so early into his reign as a world leader.

Representatives from the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) expressed frustration with the president receiving such an award while refusing to prosecute alleged war criminals, according to the Huffington Post.

"I think that there is an obvious tension between what the president is saying about the commitment we’ve got to human rights and the work we’re doing inside the U.S.," said Jameel Jaffer, director of the ACLU’s National Security Project.

"We’re frustrated by the gap in the Obama administration’s rhetoric on accountability and reality," he added.
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Honduran Democracy, Unemployment and Liberals

*Please Mr. President, honor democracy in Honduras. The people of Honduras have voted overwhelmingly for a new, non-Marxist president. The turnout of eligible voters was substantially higher than we had in the United States last November. A few days later, their congress also voted overwhelmingly not to reinstate Manuel Zelaya, the Chavez crony who was removed from office earlier this year. So now the question is, will the Obama Administration stop supporting a Marxist wanna-be and honor the wishes of a free and independent people? Let’s hope so.

*Those phony labor statistics. Also in the headlines last week: U.S. unemployment figures dipped from a record high of 10.2 percent all the way down to… well, 10.0 percent. “Only” 11,000 more workers lost their jobs in November, we were told. The market loved the news, with the Dow soaring over 100 points. What you weren’t told is that some 53,000 “discouraged” workers were no longer counted as unemployed… because they had stopped looking for work! The real jobless rate increased by 293,000 last month, to 5.9 million. Some recovery this is.

*Even the liberals are turning on him. My quote of the week comes from Tina Brown, the ultra-liberal editor of The Daily Beast. She says, “I have come to the conclusion that the real reason this gifted communicator (Barack Obama) has become so bad at communicating is that he doesn’t really believe a word that he is saying. He couldn’t convey that healthcare reform would be somehow cost-free because he knows it won’t be.” Gee, I don’t know, Ms. Brown. Outlandish exaggeration and distortion never seemed to bother the First Teleprompter before.

Chip Wood

Obama Meets Democrats To Push For Healthcare Reform

Obama meets Democrats to push for healthcare reform As the Senate struggles with some of the most contentious aspects of the healthcare reform legislation, President Obama met with the Democratic caucus on Sunday to encourage further work on what he called "the most important social legislation since Social Security."

The bill under consideration would extend insurance coverage to about 30 million more Americans, but issues such as paying for abortions and the creation of a government-run insurance system have so far proven too significant to overcome the partisan divide over the legislation.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky reiterated that the bill ignored GOP concerns and that the Democrats have expressed "no interest in drafting a proposal that was in the political middle," an allegation his opponents dismissed saying the Republicans failed to offer constructive ideas, hoping to hurt Obama politically.

According to Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin of Illinois, who was present during the meeting with the president, Obama "reminded us why we’re here, he reminded us why we run for office and he reminded us how many people are counting on us to come through," quoted by TheHill.com.

The Senate on Tuesday rejected an amendment designed to put additional restrictions on federal funding for abortion by adding language included in the House version of the bill.

In order to avoid a filibuster, the Democrats need 60 votes, which means either unanimity in their caucus or support from some Republican members, which appears unlikely thus far.
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The War on Christmas

I’ve written before about how upset I get at all the politically correct prissies who refuse to let their salespeople or employees wish their customers “Merry Christmas” this time of year.

Because they’re afraid they might upset someone who doesn’t celebrate the holiday they insist on such mind-numbing platitudes as “Season’s Greetings” or “Happy Holidays.” I hear it over and over again—and always respond with a loud and cheery “and Merry Christmas to you!” Most of time, I get a cheerful “Merry Christmas” right back.

Sadly, the war against Christmas continues to gain ground. Public-school officials at Marysville Elementary School in Wilmington, N.C., decided not to allow the kindergarten class to sing “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” at the school’s annual Christmas—oops, scratch that—the school’s annual holiday show. Seems the parent of one student objected to the song because it contained the word “Christmas.” She didn’t want her little tyke exposed to something with “religious overtones.” So the school officials buckled.

What do they do at the public schools in your area?

Meanwhile, the battle against public display of anything religious claimed another victim, this time in Washington, D.C. The new visitor’s center at the United States Capitol contains a replica of the Speaker’s rostrum in the House chamber. It’s an exact copy, except for this change: The actual chair has the words “In God We Trust” engraved across the top. The phrase is missing from the copy. I wonder which scaredy-cat bureaucrat decided on that?

We’ve become so afraid of offending a tiny (but vocal) minority that it’s perfectly all right to ignore the wishes and beliefs of a huge (but silent) majority. I’ve heard this sad situation referred to as the tyranny of the minority. But I think a more accurate phrase is the cowardice of the majority. What a bunch of spineless sissies our leaders have become.

What the Constitution Actually Says

Permit me to rant for a bit about one of the biggest lies the anti-religious zealots have used against us. It is that “the Constitution requires the separation of church and state.”

Baloney. The Constitution requires no such thing.

Let me begin today’s lesson by asking you, what is the most important sentence in the U.S. Constitution?

I would submit that it’s the very first one. Do you remember how this marvelous document begins? Our founding fathers set the tone for everything they believed, and everything that would follow, in Article I, Section 1, sentence one. It reads, “All legislative powers herein granted are vested in Congress….”

A friend of mine who has lectured widely on the Constitution likes to stop at this point and ask: “Are there any math students present? Okay, maybe you can help me out. If ‘all’ lawmaking power resides in Congress, how much is in the Supreme Court? Right, none! How about the Executive Branch? Right, none again. Thanks for your help.”

There’s a very important principle here—one that has been deliberately obfuscated over the past 50 years. A Supreme Court decision isn’t supposed to be “the law of the land.” The Court has no Constitutional right to make law. All it is supposed to do is to decide “the law of the case.” Their decision should be binding on the plaintiff and the defendant … and no one else.

Instead, for most of my lifetime, layer upon layer of additional government has been sanctioned, and even initiated, by the black-robed justices of the U.S. Supreme Court—men and women who regularly and repeatedly ignore the very first sentence of the document they have sworn to uphold.

And let me digress for a moment to note that the very same principle applies to the Executive Branch. What lawmaking powers does the Constitution bestow on the President and all of the cabinets, agencies and commissions he oversees? Again, the answer is none. Yet we get Executive Orders, Presidential decrees, all sorts of new rules and regulations, and now dozens of new “czars,” for crying out loud. Each and every one has assumed powers that are nowhere granted in the Constitution. And no one dares challenge them!

With that as background, let’s turn to the First Amendment (the one used to justify arguments for “the separation of church and state”) and see what it actually says.

Here is how it begins:
“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof…”

That seems pretty clear, doesn’t it? “Congress shall make no law,” either promoting a religion or prohibiting one.

According to the Constitution, what are the states allowed to do, when it comes to religion (or just about anything else)? The answer is, pretty much whatever they want.

Could a state require that the Ten Commandments be posted in every courthouse? Sure it could.

Could a city or county government install a crèche on its lawn every Christmas? Absolutely.

Could a governor encourage the citizens of his state to call on the Almighty to alleviate drought or do other good works? Without a doubt.

The framers of our Constitution expected the citizens of each state to decide for themselves how state and local affairs would be conducted. Would every state decide the same thing? Absolutely not. Our founding fathers expected differences to emerge between states. Some would be minor, some major. If one state passed laws you felt were onerous, you could vote to change them—or move to another state.

The idea that every law and every rule in every state should be exactly the same as the ones in every other state would strike our founding fathers as the height of absurdity. They believed that differences were good; that competition would reward good policy and punish bad.

The system worked pretty well for more than 150 years. It could work even better today, thanks to the vastly improved flow of information and transportation. If we choose, we can learn a lot about policies and procedures in other states. And if we like what we find out, we can get there a lot easier than our forefathers did.

Instead, we’ve permitted the tyranny of the minority to trample the rights of the majority. Maybe it’s time for the rest of us to demand our rights back.

My hat is off to the Bill O’Reillys, the Glenn Becks and the others across America who are fighting the good fight to celebrate Christmas this Dec. 25, and not just a “happy holiday.”

But I wish they would do more. I wish they would help us take the offensive against the liberal loonies who have gotten their way for far too long. How about a national campaign to explain and then restore the U.S. Constitution? That would be a Christmas present that would benefit the entire country.

And to all the sorry appeasers and retreaters out there, I hope someone roasts your chestnuts in an open fire. Bah, humbug, indeed.

Until next time, keep some powder dry.

—Chip Wood

Green Tea Compound Can Help Prevent Fatal Brain Disorders, New Study Suggests

Green tea compound can help prevent fatal brain disorders, new study suggests Researchers at Boston Biomedical Research Institute and the University of Pennsylvania have found that a green tea component, when combined with another chemical, may help prevent brain disorders such as Alzheimer’s, Huntington’s and Parkinson’s disease.

The study, published in the most recent issue of Nature Chemical Biology, suggests that the combination of the green tea element EGCG and the chemical DAPH-12 can prevent and destroy protein structures known as amyloids, the primary cause of fatal brain disorders.

Amyloid plaques are tightly wrapped layers of protein that envelop brain tissue causing loss of memory, motor function and premature death.

"Our findings are certainly preliminary and we need further work to fully comprehend the effects of EGCG in combination with other chemicals on amyloids," said lead scientist Martin Duennwald. "Yet, we see our study as a very exciting initial step towards combinatorial therapies for the treatment of amyloid-based diseases," he added.

The next step for the research team is to investigate the mechanism and potency of the proposed therapy in the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases.

Meanwhile, separate studies have indicated that the consumption of green tea can also help ward off heart disease and certain forms of cancer.
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Poll: U.S. Isolationist Sentiment On The Rise

Poll: U.S. isolationist sentiment on the riseA recent survey conducted by the Pew Research Center suggests that the U.S. has taken a sharp turn toward isolationism.

In the midst of a struggling economy, roughly 49 percent of participants said that the U.S. should "mind its own business internationally" and let other countries fend for themselves as best as they can.

The non-partisan research center has conducted a similar poll for the last 45 years and there has never been a plurality of voters who favored isolationism before.

However, the rate has steadily been rising. For example, in 2005, approximately 42 percent of respondents said that the U.S. should "mind its own business" in regards to international affairs, up from 30 percent in 2002.

Pew Research Center president Andrew Kohut said that the poor economy was most responsible for the America’s isolationist attitude and that the public was "displeased with the two wars [that the U.S. is] waging in Iraq and Afghanistan," quoted by the Associated Press.

Last week, President Obama announced that he will be dispatching 30,000 more troops to Afghanistan. The first batch of Marines will likely be deployed by the end of the year.
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Marijuana Can Benefit Multiple Sclerosis Patients, Review Concludes

Marijuana can benefit multiple sclerosis patients, review concludesA new study conducted by the Global Neuroscience Initiative Foundation in Los Angeles suggests that cannabis can significantly reduce spasticity in multiple sclerosis (MS) patients.

Researchers reviewed six separate studies where marijuana was used in MS patients, and found that five of the trials showed that the use of the drug reduced spasms and involuntary muscle tension while improving the individual’s mobility.

"The therapeutic potential of cannabinoids in MS appears to be comprehensive, and should be given considerable attention," said lead researcher Shaheen Lakhan.

Lakhan stated that current conventional treatments may also reduce spasticity, but can be ineffective, difficult to obtain or associated with painful side-effects.

Researchers do warn of potential repercussions of the use of medicinal marijuana, such as intoxication or addiction, but they add that "considering the distress and limitations spasticity brings to individuals with MS, it is important to carefully weigh the potential for side effects with the potential for symptom relief."

Meanwhile, independent research has indicated that medicinal marijuana may also be helpful in controlling symptoms associated with glaucoma and certain forms of cancer.
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Democrats Look To Increase Debt Ceiling

Democrats look to increase debt ceilingOn Thursday, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi indicated that congressional Democrats are planning on raising the national debt ceiling before the end of the year.

Treasury officials have informed Congress that they must raise the cap before the end of the year or run the risk of not being able to make Social Security and veterans’ payments in January, according to the Washington Post.

Pelosi faced immediate criticism due to the fact that she plans to combine legislation that would raise the debt ceiling with the 2010 defense appropriations bill that will fund the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

"We need to have a vehicle so that the Senate can vote on it, and it is our intention to have something on the Department of Defense bill," said Pelosi.

House Minority Leader John Boehner stated that Republicans plan to vote against raising the debt ceiling.

"We’ll vote against it because of their trillion-dollar stimulus plan that hasn’t worked," he said, quoted by FoxNews.com.

"They have made a habit of taking defense appropriation bills, bills that fund the support of our troops, and adding on there the most distasteful things they can think of, trying to make sure they get it passed on the backs of our soldiers," Boehner added. "It’s a bad way of doing business."
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Compound Found In Chicken Can Relieve Arthritis Pain, Research Concludes

Compound found in chicken can relieve arthritis pain, research concludesA new study conducted at the Anhui Medical University in China suggests that chicken collagen type II (CCII) can provide relief from symptoms associated with rheumatoid arthritis (RA).

The research team tested the experimental treatment by comparing it to the traditional anti-rheumatic drug methotrextrate. Patients who took CCII capsules showed considerably improved joint function and experienced milder side effects compared to those who went through the conventional western treatment.

"We’ve shown that CCII is a promising alternative therapeutic strategy that may be used as a nutritional supplement against rheumatoid arthritis," said lead researcher Wei Wei.

RA is an autoimmune disorder that forces the body to mistakenly attack its own tissue. The team believes that patients who take chicken collagen capsules can develop an "oral tolerance" that will lead to a reduction in autoimmune activity with little or no side effects.

Other alternative treatments that have shown promise in relieving RA symptoms include fish oil, thunder god vine and tai chi, according to the Mayo Clinic. Techniques such as deep breathing, muscle relaxation and guided imagery can also be used to help prevent pain associated with the condition.
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Go Ahead And Load Up On Cranberry Sauce This Holiday

Even if they turkey's gone, gobble up the rest of the cranberry sauceThanksgiving might be over, but don’t toss out the leftover cranberry sauce. A new study recently presented at the the Annual Scientific Meeting of the American Urological Association (AUA) indicated that weight loss and seasonal cranberry sauce might just be good for your health.

After examining insurance claims, researchers with the AUA found that a higher body mass index (BMI) might put individuals at a higher risk from suffering from a urinary tract infection. Those who choose to lose weight, and bring down their BMI, might be less likely to suffer from this condition.

This infection can develop into something quite aggressive if left untreated due to the bacteria that irritates the urinary tract. "If a patient has symptoms, he or she should seek care promptly to avoid potentially serious complications," advises Dr. Anthony Smith.

One way to keep the urinary tract healthy is to eat cranberries or drink cranberry juice. If you are concerned about your weight, look for sugar-free or low sugar options with as much fruit juice as possible. Make your own cranberry sauce to ensure it is full of healthy ingredients and when the turkey is gone, try mixing some with plain yogurt for a sweet, tart treat. ADNFCR-1961-ID-19487281-ADNFCR